The String Cheese Incident Premieres Trippy 'All We Got' Video, Talks Going Hard for 25th Anniversary
Michael Kang is confident the String Cheese Incident will release an album again at some point. But for now, the group is happy to be on the one-song-at-a-time train with three singles so far this year -- including the new "All We Got," premiering exclusively below.
Kang tells Billboard the approach fits the eclectic nature of SCI's music, which in the past has made it challenging for the troupe to put together what it considers unified, cohesive albums. "Doing it this way we don't have to worry about trying to mish-mosh it all together and make it sound like one thing," Kang explains to Billboard. "We can take a song that's basically a bluegrass tune, or something in the EDM style or Afropop or whatever and just record it and let it have its life in this world. We can let the songs be what they want to be and not have to sit there and think, 'Do these belong on the same album?'" He adds that "unfortunately people are not as album-centric, anyways," while the individual track releases will let SCI get more music out quicker.
"Sometimes it takes a long time record and release an album," Kang says. "You'll be playing these songs but it takes a while to get (the album) out. It's arduous. This is the antidote to that process. It's more important for us to just do the songs and get 'em out there and get the fans listening -- the sooner the better."
"All We Got," which the group started during a writing retreat in Carbondale, Colo. two years ago, blends elements of Afropop, EDM and funk over the course of more than seven minutes. The song was advanced during live shows, with a deliberate nod to Daft Punk's "Get Lucky," then refined and recorded at SCI's own studio, The Lab, near Boulder, Colo. "We did a couple of other tracks that were very much like electro Afro-funk and knew we wanted to do another one like that," Kang says. "We started with the bass line, then the chorus part and we wanted to do a real nod to the EDM world as well. So we put all that together into this track." Kang and bandmate Keith Moseley came up with the lyrics with help from good pal Jim Lauderdale, who happened to be in town, and Tony White was tapped to provide a guest vocal.
"The whole thing was another mish-mosh," Kang says. "It's the way we do a lot of stuff. We like to mix it up like that."
"All We Got" and the other singles come as SCI is celebrating its 25th anniversary, which Kang says "is crazy to think about." Though no individual event is scheduled right now the group has a busy year ahead, including its usual three "incidents" during the Electric Forest Festival in western Michigan June 27-30 and a combination of festivals and two-night theater appearances at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta and Oakland and the Fillmore in San Francisco, among others. A commemorative photo book is due out later this year, and the group is collaborating with Oskar Blues Brewery on a beer, SCIPA, that will be available in limited quantities during its July shows in Colorado.